3 Tips to Remember When Eating Gluten-Free

With these 3 tips in mind, your gluten-free diet can help you feel good in no time.

“Gluten-free” doesn’t always mean good for you.

Not all gluten-free foods and alternatives are nutritious. There’s little point in eliminating refined breads, pasta, and flour-based cookies if you’re just going to load up on prepackaged cookies, pizza, or frozen alternatives that are labeled gluten-free—these can still contain large amounts of sugar and other high-glycemic ingredients. Check ingredient labels for artificial sweeteners, even if those sweeteners are gluten-free. If you can’t go without some sweetness, stick to natural sweeteners like dates or honey.

Eat good carbs, high proteins, and whole foods.

Focus on eating whole, simple foods. Just like the foods we use at Freshly, whole foods are naturally filled with protein, healthy fats, and fiber. The popular paleo diet is naturally gluten free, and follows those guidelines, too. If that means reducing your diet to much fewer—but much fresher—ingredients rather than piling up on the gluten-free alternatives, that can only be good news for your body. Nutrition research isn’t always accurate and fad diets come and go, but you can trust these naturally gluten-free choices to keep you full and energized.

Make sure to balance out your gluten-free plate.

When you go gluten-free, you might feel tempted to replace your pasta and pizza cravings with starchy foods like potatoes, rice, or corn flour, which are all gluten-free. Some of these (like white potatoes, starchy veggies, and some fruits, for example) also rank higher on something called the glycemic index (GI). Foods with a high GI can boost your blood sugar and make you crave more food, then eat more food. The key? Balance out your higher “GI” foods with protein and with lower-GI carbs, like veggies. You don’t have to cut potatoes, rice, or corn out of your gluten-free diet altogether if you don’t want to. Instead, have a plate that incorporates other nutritious friends, like healthy fats and higher fiber-foods, too.